Wednesday June 28th 2017

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Digital Self

There’s always a time when you start asking yourself questions like: who am I? where am I going to? Yes, I’m sure you don’t need to be high to ask yourself those questions and if you haven’t done that yet, soon they will come. After that probably the most logical question is going to be: Who’s really able to answer these questions? Myself or someone else…self.

The topic here is quite complicated because we know life it’s generally complicated and it gets worst when you start thinking about your digital life too. Yes, by now you should realize that we live in two parallel worlds and we have two parallel lives and yes, you now have “two selves” to analyze: your(real)self and your(digital)self.
Now, this opens a lot of new questions and issues to be addressed. For example, how does your(real)self interact on the net and how do you present your(real)self to the others on the net? What is the substance of your(digital)self?
The following are few possibilities:

a) on the net you behave exactly like you are normally in real life so that your(real)self matches perfectly your(digital)self


b) on the net you behave in a way you would like to be in the real world but you can’t because you’re: shy, boring, ignorant, sick, addicted, ugly and the net for you it’s just a place where you can hide you(real)self


c) on the net you behave in the way you would never be in your real life because you want to be bad but bad behaviour could make you loose chances in real life, so you use your(digital)self to get your(real)self free


d) your(digital)self is showing you that your lying to your(real)self so your(real)self can be really “real” only in the digital world while in the real world your(real)self is a fake


e) changing your(digital)self it’s easy, cause you’re just changing the way the others perceive you and not the way you are. Also, in case you want to change your(real)self you could always make a free test on your(digital)self and, if test is good, you could roll the change out to your(real)self with no harm


f) switching between your(real) and your(digital) it’s always a little shocking. It always leave you a bit disappointed, especially when the two selves are in conflict with each other


g) dealing with two selves might bring risks to develop double personalities, you say hello to someone and then he goes straight to his pc, connect to the Internet and replies to you via email


h) if you are married and you cheat you can always say: “it wasn’t me, it was my(digital)self…” or stuff like that


i) what about loosing your(digital)self on the net? You can’t, that’s a paradox

Yeah, really hard topic. I don’t think that even a psychologist could address the issues above properly, simply because when psychology was invented Internet did not exist, so the implication of the net or the digital implications if you like,  are still under studies. I know there are also experiments currently running, like growing up humans digitally… not really made of bytes but with a digital life only. Native digital, that’s it.

The problem when you are young is that you probably don’t have a stable view of your(real)self, that’s why dealing with two selves might bring confusion on young minds, but everything should get clear if your primary self is a (digital)self while your(real)self is just something you’re not conscious about. You’re naturally digital without looking for a personality theatre where you need to show up your qualities, your interests, your photos,  etc. Everything is already there. You don’t need to look for things, you already know where to find what you need. You got a google-mind, you got a wikipedia-knowledge, you got all the music and all the videos you want. What about education then? You need to be fair and polite, otherwise you risk to be kicked in your(digital)ass but of course, you got a “netiquette” too.

All of a sudden you realize that the net is a nice place to live, you got places to go, things to do, people to meet. Also, digital life looks much more fair than real life as you have no difference among people. Every self has the same value.
Even famous people like actors or singers appear to be like every other digital self as their digital self doesn’t seem to be so special on the net. You get on their facebook page and… so what? I got a facebook page too. You might have some more contacts than me but who cares? You’re digital like me. It really looks like if the Internet is the place where everybody is really like everyone else. There are rules but there’s no politics. Politicians are them(digital)selves but you got exactly the same powers they have… eventually, if you frequent the net-underground, you might even have more powers than them…. and hack them.
What does hack mean though? That doesn’t mean anything.

There’s a theory which explains that we should consider our conscience as a “software” that runs on top of some kind of hardware, our brain supposedly. If this is true we should be able to perform mind upgrades in order to improve our performances, upgrades that might bring us capabilities to improve ourselves like thinking faster or fixing our inner problems, solving complicated issues, turning our life in something easy and breezy… fantasies. The point is that we’re not even able to upgrade our(digital)self, although digitally speaking this should be somehow possible, but practically this has no sense at all while we’re still attached to the ground and not plugged somewhere. Then we might think: if your life could be changed with a software upgrade…. first of all which operating system would you run: Windows, Linux, Mac or…. D(igital self)os? How would you define your nature then: optical? electro-magnetical? ethereal? wire-shark? Would you be surfing and browsing all around the world every time or would you like to be stored somewhere? Maybe in some hard drive for the time being. Would you prefer to be linked to somebody or living in the underground, detached like an alone(digital)wolf.
Once living inside “the net” 24 hours a day, would you still want to have a look outside? Would you still want your(…)self back?
Wait a minute now, who’s my(…)self?

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